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Sunnyside, 41st and Fox Street Station
Terrell, Shannon
Cooke, Thomas
Place of Publication:
Denver, CO
University of Colorado Denver
Publication Date:


General Note:
Prepared for client Amanda Sandoval, District 1, Denver City Council
General Note:
Advisor : Jennifer Steffel Johnson

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University of Colorado Denver
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Auraria Library
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Copyright [name of copyright holder or Creator or Publisher as appropriate]. Permission granted to University of Colorado Denver to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.


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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY iii EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ii EXECUTIVE SUMMARY INTRODUCTION The City of Denver has been preparing for development around the 41st and Fox Station since the adoption of the Regional Transportation District’s voter-approved FasTracks in 2004. The station, being just one stop away from Denver’s Union Station, is projected to be a new regional community center and is an ideal location for increased density. The 41st and Fox Station is located just north west of Downtown Denver and operates along the B and G light rail commuter lines. The Station Area began in 2004 and a transit-oriented development plan infrastructure and transportation improvements to the eastern side of the 41st and Fox Station, also known as “Fox Station East” or “Fox Island,” while the western side of the tracks has not received similar attention. As with “Fox Island,” the western portion of the station area is located and land use challenges. While the light rail station is a huge community station is a pedestrian bridge over the railroad tracks, and there is limited west-to-east connectivity from the neighborhood. The 41st and Fox Station Area Plan marks the western portion of the 41st and Fox Station for increased residential density and building heights. Redevelopment the pedestrian bridge; however, zoning improvements are needed to promote transit-oriented development, while mitigating externalities of increased density adjacent to low density single-family. STUDY AREA BOUNDARY EXECUTIVE SUMMARY iii A ddressing the needs of the west side of the station area located in Sunnyside is a main concern for Councilwoman Amanda P. Sandoval, who represents District 1 in northwest Denver, and other key constituents. In order to address potential issues, the Sunnyside activates the pedestrian bridge and elevates the west side of the station area as a community center for the Sunnyside neighborhood. PROJECT INTENT This capstone project focuses on urban design and zoning recommendations for the western portion of the 41st and Fox Station Area (Study Area), bounded by Inca Street to the east, 40th Avenue to the south, 44th Avenue to the north, and Lipan Street to the west. Students Shannon Terrell and Thomas Cooke (Capstone Team) will development in this area; analyze the study area in two categories: Transit & Accessibility, Land Use & Zoning; create a set of policy and design recommendations for a cohesive vision. The report is informed by case studies, background research, subject matter expert interviews, and key stakeholder input. METHODOLOGY Methodology focused on identifying existing challenges and opportunities within the study area through examination of adopted plans, background research, interviews with subject matter experts, and analysis of existing conditions. A series of interviews were conducted with subject matter experts and community stakeholders. The majority of the meetings were concentrated on the future planning initiatives, land use, connectivity, and urban design concepts for the site. A walkability study was with transportation and the land use network throughout the area. area, an improved pedestrian and bicycling network and safety, green infrastructure, the preservation of the existing industrial character residential density. Further, the Capstone Team learned more about the site by examining long-term plans for the area that were adopted by the City of Denver, including the Denver Zoning Code, the 41st & Fox Station Area Plan ArcGIS and Sketchup were the primary software that were utilized to further understand the existing conditions and topography of the appropriate zoning updates, and desired built form for the study area. VISION The vision for the study area is to encourage a residential mixeduse community for the existing Sunnyside neighborhood that respects existing architectural character, promotes equitable development, improves connection to the 41st and Fox Station, and creates a desirable and vibrant community hub for the Sunnyside neighborhood where visitors and residents can live, work, shop, dine, and play. OBJECTIVES 1 Create a cohesive vision for the station area 2 Increase building heights and density to promote community serving amenities and successful transitoriented development 3 Encourage regulations that ensure high quality urbanism and design 4 Create better street circulation to promote a positive pedestrian experience 5 Encourage residential and commercial development in suitable locations that will spur community growth and cultural interactions 6 Preserve natural viewsheds and historic vernacular architecture 7 adaptive reuse to avoid displacement of existing residents and business


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY v EXECUTIVE SUMMARY INCA STREET REIMAGINED Added bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure and bioretention VISION ELEMENTS The report is broken up into two vision elements: transit and access and land use and zoning. TRANSIT AND ACCESS of local bus routes and the commuter light rail, the neighborhood is bounded by major vehicular highways, arterial roadways, railroad tracks, development, and active urban streets. The expansion and integration of pedestrian and cyclist infrastructure within the study area will attract new visitors to the station area while providing improved access to the regional system for existing residents. The capstone team recommends: 1. The creation of a pedestrian and biker route through Ciancio Park that will enhance W 41st Avenue as a better connection to the pedestrian bridge that leads to the regional transit station. 2. The extension of the Inca Street cycling route north to W. 48th Ave though cityowned easements adjacent to the railroad. 3. improved pedestrian and cyclist infrastructure improvements. 4. The implementation and integration of sustainable stormwater bioretention and expanded vegetation. 5. walkways into the existing urban network that will support public gathering events, spurring consumer activity for the surrounding businesses. LAND USE AND ZONING Existing land uses were examined based on recommendations from the 41st and Fox Station Area Plan and recently adopted city-wide plans. many of the forward-looking zoning recommendations were not implemented As a result, recent rezoning amendments within the study incohesive urban design. Future zoning for the study area must protect the existing industrial nature of the site, appropriately transition lower residential density to higher density, and attract economic activity to the area. The capstone team recommends the following: 1. Rezone the study area to create a clear vision for future development. The team recommends the Urban Center (C) Neighborhood Context to promote residential mixed-use with retail from Inca St to Jason St. The team also recommends the Main Street (-MS) Building Form and Character along W 41st Avenue to create a lively retail center that helps activate the pedestrian bridge. Lastly, Residential Mixed-Use (-RX) is encouraged throughout the rest of the study area to keep development in line with the 41st and Fox Station recommends of medium-tohigh residential. 2. Increase building heights based on grade in order to promote transit-oriented development and greater density near the pedestrian bridge. Building heights are encouraged based on grade and step down, from 3 feet closer to Lipan and as high as 8 feet on Inca. 3. Prevent existing industrial displacement by either expanding the industrial mixed-use zone district or designating the area as an 4. Encourage the use of zoning tools, such as design and incentive reuse. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY iv


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY vi EXECUTIVE SUMMARY vii U-TU-C URBAN CENTER MAIN STREET C-MS U-TU-C URBAN TWO UNI T RESIDENTIAL MIXED USE C-RX 41st A ve.42nd A ve.4 3 rd . A v e .INCA STREET 41ST AND FOX STATION CONCEPTUAL DESIGN INDUSTRIAL MIXED USE I-MX RESIDENTIAL MIXED USE C-RXINCA STREET INCA STREET CONCEPTUAL DESIGN Using Sketchup, the Capstone Team provides a conceptual design of all recommendations from the transportation and access and land use and zoning chapters. The conceptual design includes enhancements through Ciancio Park and along Inca Street with additional green infrastructure and pedestrian-scaled design. Further, zoning is envisioned through the desired built form of each zone district and the adaptive reuse of the existing industrial area to create a complete picture of these recommendations.


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY viii EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ix NEXT STEPS GUIDANCE + IMPLEMENTATION In order to further the recommendations from this report, the following actions are organized by needed steps, partners, and timeframe it would take. These will likely incur a longer process, due to city priority and overall timeliness, but nonetheless help provide a wholistic picture to what actions might be needed to address recommendations and shortfalls in this report. PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT AND COMMUNITY INPUT The next step following this report is community input. Due to the limitations for the capstone project, the community was not involved in this report. The capstone team feels that this will be an essential step in diving deeper into what the Sunnyside neighborhood would like to see moving forward. CONNECTIVITY AND INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENTS The Capstone Team found that pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure is to the rest of Sunnyside neighborhood and surrounding community. Expanding the pedestrian and cycling infrastructure network will improve safety, attract new visitors and residents to the area, enable existing solutions to and from the station area. LAND USE AND ZONING Currently, developers are combining and rezoning parcels by amending the existing zoning code, resulting in inconsistent zoning and an absence of cohesiveness with the existing conditions of the area. Updating the zoning for the study area will promote recommendations from the 41st and Fox Station Area Plan and create a desirable built environment that encourages pedestrian friendly scale and design. PRIORITY ACTION STEPS PARTNERS TIME FRAME PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT AND CO MMUNITY INPUT High Public Engagement Conduct Community Meeting 3-6 months High Neighborhood Planning Initiative (NPI) Community Planning and Development (CPD) Councilwoman District 1 and Sunnyside United Neighbors Inc. (SUNI) 1-2 years TRANSPORTATION AND ACCESS High Orient primary streets EastWest Designate w 41st Avenue, Lipan Street, and W 45th Avenue as primary streets Public Works 1 3 years (+) High Improve neighborhood connectivity Create a pedestrian and bicycle path through Ciancio Park Parks Public Works 1 3 years (+) PRIORITY ACTION STEPS PARTNERS TIME FRAME High Improve pedestrian and cycling network and safety Install permanent bicycle infrastructure along Inca St Identify missing infrastructure and develop a policy to address missing sidewalks and other pedestrian infrastructure Vision Zero Walk Denver Public Works Community Planning and Development 2 3 years (+) Medium Improve stormwater management with green infrastructure Develop a sustainable incentive policy for developers to provide green infrastructure Develop a City-wide policy for improving streetscape near light rail stations Private Developers Public Works Community Planning and Development 3 5 years BUILT FORM The 41st and Fox Station Area Plan has marked the study area for increased residential density and building heights. Although this recommendation does promote successful principles of transit-oriented development, the City and County of Denver can capitalize on existing topography of the area by incentivizing greater design elements in exchange for taller building heights, greater building design, public plazas, and community serving amenities. Importance should be on preserving the historical character and architectural vernacular of buildings and preserving the natural viewshed.


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY x EXECUTIVE SUMMARY xi PRIORITY ACTION STEPS PARTNERS TIME FRAME High Identify areas suitable for public open space and plazas Adopt policy incentives for public development Parks Developers 2 3 years (+) BUILT FORM High Encourage high for the built environment Develop a committee Conduct Community Meeting Amend 41st and Fox Station Area Plan Create a Design Overlay for the study area Community Planning and Development Department of Housing Stability Private Consultants Sunnyside community SUNI 1 3 years (+) PRIORITY ACTION STEPS PARTNERS TIME FRAME Medium Enhance public art and Partner with RTD to help fund and promote art near the station area Develop design for Sunnyside neighborhood Explore grants to fund signage through Denver’s Vision Zero or Denver Community Active Living Coalition RTD Art-NTransit Program Private Consultants Vision Zero Denver Community Active Living Coalition 1-3 years LAND USE AND ZONING High Rezone Study Area Legislative Rezoning Community Planning and Development 1 year (+) PRIORITY ACTION STEPS PARTNERS TIME FRAME High Preserve historic buildings through adaptive reuse incentives Create Incentive Overlay Community Planning and Development Private Consultants (Market Feasibility Study) 1 3 years (+) Medium Create incentives for salvaging demolished building materials to encourage sustainable building Adopt sustainable zoning tools Community Planning and Development Private Consultants (Market Feasibility Study) 2 3 years (+)


1I-25I-MX-3 I-MX-5 1 I-25 I-MX-3 I-MX-5 HIGHLANDS SLOANS LAKE BERKELEY SUNNYSIDE CHAFFEE PARK GLOBEVILLE FIVE POINTS DOWNTOWN South Platte River South Platte River Cherry CreekDENVER UNION STATION 41ST AND FOX STREET STATION 38TH AND BLAKE ST. STATION NATIONAL WESTERN STATIONPecos Blvd.38th AvenueBrighton Blvd.20th Ave. REGIONAL LOCATIONTRANSIT + ACCESS BUILT FORM + DESIGN STREET HIERARCHY PRIMARY STREET SECONDARY STREET PEDESTRIAN STREET 41st Ave. 40th Ave. 39th Ave. 42nd. Ave. 43rd. Ave. 44th. Ave. 45th. Ave. 41st & Fox Street Station 3 2 12 1ZONING + LAND USE Ciancio Park Horace Mann School 41st Ave. 40th Ave. 39th Ave. 38th Ave. 42nd. Ave. 43rd. Ave. 44th. Ave. 45th. Ave. I-70 Pecos Lipan St. Navajo St. Mariposa St. Inca St. Jason St. Kalamath St.41st & Fox Street Station Horace Mann School Parking Commercial Residential Residential 41st. Street 41st. Street Commercial Commercial Parking Parking Residential Residential Residential Residential Residential 41st. StreetSECTION | REAR SETBACK 41ST STREET | PEDESTRIAN AND CYCLING EXTENSION SECTION | FRONT SETBACK STUDY AREA SECTION | SITE TRANSECT PUBLIC SPACE | INDUSTRIAL PLAZA SHARED STREET | INCA STREET CONCEPTUAL DESIGN | SITE PLAN Horace Mann School5260’ 5240’ 5230’ 5200’ 5220’Ciancio Park CRX-8 MS-5 MS-5 MS-2 MS-2 Lipan Street Kalamath Street Jason Street Inca Street INCA ST. 41ST ST. 3 I-MX U-TU-C C-RX C-MS41st & Fox Street StationSUNNYSIDE U-TU-C URBAN CENTER MAIN STREET C-MS U-TU-C URBAN TWO UNIT INDUSTRIAL MIXED USE I-MX RESIDENTIAL MIXED USE C-RX RESIDENTIAL MIXED USE C-RX 41st Ave.42nd Ave.43rd. Ave.INCA STREET INCA STREET INCA STREET INCA STREET INCA STREET Students: Thomas Cooke | Shannon Terrell Client: Office of Amanda P. Sandoval Council District 1